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Pharmacists would be added to the list of professionals considered "health care providers" under the Social Security Act if a bill introduced by South Dakota Democratic Sen. Tim Johnson becomes law. Such a designation would allow pharmacists to bill Medicare for professional services.
Consultant pharmacists have long sought provider status, noting their medication-management skills for complex cases. The bill coincided with the released of findings by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists that half of Americans 65 or older take five or more medications daily.